Environmental Assessment Act, R.S.O. 1990, Subsection 7(1)

This review is subject to the provisions of Ontario Regulation 616/98 which sets out a deadline for the completion of this document. This paragraph and the giving of the notice of completion are the notices required by subsection 7(3) of the Environmental Assessment Act.

The review documents the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks’ evaluation of the environmental assessment and takes the comments of the government agencies, the public and Indigenous communities into consideration.

Executive summary

Who

GFL Environmental Inc.

What

Ministry review of an environmental assessment (EA) for the proposed undertaking: an expansion of approximately 4.2 million cubic metres (m3) of landfill disposal capacity for solid non-hazardous municipal, industrial, commercial and institutional wastes generated within the Province of Ontario. This will extend the operating life of the landfill by approximately 5–10 years.

When

EA submitted: June 1, 2018.

Construction is estimated to occur once current capacity is reached in 2019.

Where

The Eastern Ontario Waste Handling Facility, which includes the landfill site, is located on Lots 17, 18 and the western half of Lot 16, Concession 10, Township of Roxborough (now Township of North Stormont), United Counties of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry.

Why

The purpose of the proposed undertaking is to provide additional landfill disposal capacity at the existing facility, which will enable GFL to continue to provide disposal services for residual non-hazardous solid waste to their customers once it reaches its currently approved disposal capacity.

Conclusions

The ministry review concludes that the EA was prepared in accordance with the approved terms of reference and contains sufficient information to assess the potential environmental effects of the proponent’s undertaking. The EA demonstrated that GFL Environmental Inc. will be able to meet the objectives set out in its terms of reference. No significant issues were raised by government agencies during the EA process. A number of standard conditions are proposed in order to ensure that the project proceeds as outlined and persons/agencies with an interest in the project would continue to be consulted.

1. Environmental assessment process

The Environmental Assessment Act (EAA) provides a proponent driven planning process designed to incorporate the consideration of the environment into decision-making by assessing the effects of an undertaking on the environment. In Ontario, the EAA sets out the general contents for the preparation of an EA, as well as the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP/ministry) evaluation process. For those proponents and undertakings subject to the EAA, approval under the EAA is required before the undertaking can proceed.

Proponents address a wide range of potential effects on the natural, social, cultural and economic environments to ensure the protection, conservation and wise management of the environment. An EA determines, on the basis of the environmental effects, if an undertaking should proceed, and if so, how environmental effects can be managed or mitigated.

EAs may identify a problem or opportunity, consider alternative ways of addressing the problem or opportunity, evaluate the environmental effects of the alternatives and select a preferred undertaking from the alternatives. The proponent must consider actions to avoid, reduce and mitigate potential environmental effects. In preparing the EA, the proponent completes various studies and consults with interested stakeholders including government agencies, the public and affected Indigenous communities to evaluate the alternatives and determine the preferred undertaking. Once the undertaking is approved, the proponent is required to monitor to demonstrate compliance with standards, regulations and guidelines of the EAA approval.

1.1 Terms of reference

Preparing an EA is a two-step application to the Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks (Minister). The first step requires the proponent to prepare and submit a terms of reference (ToR) to the ministry for review and approval. The ToR serves as a framework and work plan for how the EA will be prepared, including presenting the problem statement, identifying the alternatives that will be evaluated and the public, government agency and Indigenous consultation activities that will be carried out.

The ToR was prepared pursuant to sections 6(2)(c) and 6.1(3) of the EAA. Under these sections of the EAA, the ToR must set out in detail the requirements for the preparation of the EA and may consist of information other than that required under section 6.1(2) of the EAA, which sets out what are commonly referred to as the “generic” requirements of an EA. This allowed the proponent to focus on the expansion of the existing landfill. This occurred as a result of an initial assessment of various options, including the “do nothing” option, establishing a new landfill, exporting waste, and expanding the existing landfill.

The ToR also set out how the proponent would evaluate alternative designs related to the expansion of the landfill, and assess potential environmental effects and benefits of the alternatives.

The ToR also included a monitoring strategy and monitoring schedule, and included a consultation plan for consultation with the public, Indigenous communities and government agencies during the preparation of the EA.

On May 11, 2017, the Minister approved GFL Environmental Inc.’s (proponent’s) ToR. The ToR established the purpose of the study, which was to provide additional waste disposal capacity. The rationale for the undertaking was identified in the ToR.

1.2 Environmental assessment

Once the ToR is approved by the Minister, the proponent can proceed to the second step of the EA process and carry out the EA. The EA must be prepared in accordance with the approved ToR and the requirements of the EAA. Once the proponent has carried out the EA, including consultation, the EA is submitted to the ministry for review and a decision.

A draft EA was made available to the public and agencies between January 31, 2018 and May 1, 2018. On June 1, 2018, the proponent submitted the Eastern Ontario Waste Handling Facility EA to the ministry for a decision on the proposed undertaking. The EA submission comment period ended on July 20, 2018.

The EA was circulated for review to local, provincial and federal governmental agencies known as the Government Review Team (GRT). The GRT, including federal, provincial and local government agencies, reviewed the EA to ensure that the information and conclusions of the EA were valid, based on their agencies’ mandates. The public and Indigenous communities also had an opportunity to review the EA and submit their comments to the ministry. All comments received by the ministry are considered by the Minister before a decision is made about the undertaking.

1.3 Ministry review

The EAA requires the ministry to prepare and publish a review of the EA, known simply as the ministry review (review). The review is the ministry’s evaluation of the EA. The purpose of the review is to determine if the EA has been prepared in accordance with the approved ToR and meets the requirements of the EAA, and whether the evaluation in the EA is sufficient to allow the Minister to make a decision about the proposed undertaking.

The review outlines whether the information contained in the EA supports the recommendations and conclusions for the selection of the proposed undertaking. Ministry staff, with input from the GRT, evaluates the technical merits of the proposed undertaking, including the anticipated environmental effects and the proposed mitigation measures. The review also provides an overview and analysis of the public, government agency and Indigenous community comments on the EA and the proposed undertaking.

The Minister considers the conclusion of the review when making a decision; the review itself is not the decision making mechanism. The Minister’s decision on the undertaking described in the EA will be made following the end of the five-week comment period on the review. The Minister’s decision is subject to the approval of the Lieutenant Governor in Council.

The review comment period allows the GRT, the public and Indigenous communities to see how their concerns with the EA and the proposed undertaking have been considered. During the review comment period, anyone can submit comments to the ministry on the EA, the undertaking and the review. In addition, anyone can request that the Minister refer the EA, or any matter relating to the EA, to the Environmental Review Tribunal for a hearing if they believe that there are significant outstanding environmental effects that the proponent has not considered in the EA. Requests for a hearing can only be made during this comment period. The Minister will consider all requests and determine if a hearing is necessary.

A notice of completion of the review was published indicating that this review has been completed and is available for a five-week comment period. Copies of the review have been placed in the same public record locations where the EA was available as well as the ministry website, and copies have been distributed to the GRT members, potentially affected or interested Indigenous communities, and other stakeholders such as local citizens. Those members of the public who submitted comments during the EA comment period have been provided with copies of the review.

2. The proposed undertaking

Historical context

The Eastern Ontario Waste Handling Facility (project), which includes the landfill site, is located on Lots 17, 18 and the western half of Lot 16, Concession 10, Township of Roxborough (now Township of North Stormont), United Counties of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry. The project was approved under the EAA in 1999. The proponent, Lafleche Environmental Inc. (purchased by GFL Environmental Inc. in 2016) began operations of the landfill following its EAA approval and has continued to operate the facility with a total landfill capacity of 7.4 million cubic metres. The landfill is approved to accept solid nonhazardous municipal, industrial, commercial and institutional wastes generated within the Province of Ontario for disposal. The landfill has a permitted annual fill rate of 755,000 tonnes per year and an average daily fill rate of 2,500 tonnes per day.

The proponent operates the facility under Environmental Compliance Approval A420018 from the ministry. The proponent has continued to be compliant with its existing Environmental Compliance Approval and no issues have been reported to the ministry’s district office.

The proponent is currently implementing waste diversion facilities at the site and has identified strategies that could be implemented in the future to support increased waste diversion including:

  • a residential recyclables program, including a residential source-separated organics facility, waste electronics, tires and construction and demolition waste
  • a future large scale mattress recycling facility
  • a future gypsum recycling facility at the site which will take the used gypsum board and reuse the paper at the compost facility as a bulking agent material and the gypsum reused by farmers as a soil additive
  • a future heat recovery system for the heat from the existing co-generation facility and use the heat for greenhouses and/or grain drying facility for farmers

The facility also receives leaf and yard waste, asbestos and contaminated soils. The organics are processed at the composting facility located on site, and the other recyclables are transferred through Lafleche’s partner company Matrec Inc.

These waste diversion facilities not only contribute to the reduction of waste and greenhouse gases, but will provide economic opportunities for the proponent which can be re-invested into the facility.

Study area and purpose

The study area identified in the EA is the existing landfill site, which encompasses an area of 189 hectares, as well as the potentially affected surrounding areas. The off-site study area encompasses the lands in the vicinity of the landfill extending approximately one kilometer from the property boundaries of the facility.

The entrance to the facility is in the southeast corner, off of Lafleche Road near Highway 138 (see Figure 2). The current haul route to the facility is via Highway 417, Highway 138 and Lafleche Road.

The study area is rural, with the existing adjacent lands being predominantly agricultural. The proponent owns 380 hectares of land immediately east of the facility and an additional 405 hectares immediately south of the facility. The nearest residential dwelling is approximately one kilometer to the west of the landfill property boundary.

There are no major hydrogeological features within the study area. The closest major surface water feature, the South Nation River, is located approximately 9 km west of the project site.

The purpose of the EA is to provide approximately 4.2 million m3 of additional landfill disposal capacity at the existing landfill, which will enable GFL to continue to provide disposal services for residual non-hazardous solid waste to their customers once it reaches its currently approved disposal capacity (which is anticipated to be reached by end of 2019).

Description of the proposed undertaking

As stated in Section 3 of the EA, the proposed undertaking is to develop the remaining areas of the existing landfill—Stages 3B and 4 (refer to Figure 2 in the review). The development of these stages will provide approximately 4.2 million cubic metres of landfill disposal capacity and extend the operating life of the landfill by approximately 5 to 10 years.

The proposed undertaking includes the development of landfill disposal capacity through a lateral expansion of the existing landfill, within the current landfill property boundaries, as owned by GFL. This alternative will support the integrated facilities at the landfill site including management of residuals from the composting facility operation, enhancing the on-going operation of the LFG utilization facility, and receiving post-diversion residual wastes, provides cost effective disposal services to generators across Ontario integrated with their local collection. The ongoing integration of these operations further enhances the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.

If EAA approval is granted, the undertaking will be completed in accordance with the terms and provisions outlined in the EA and any proposed conditions of approval; and will include the details outlined above. In addition, the proponent must still obtain all other legislative approvals it may require for the undertaking. The additional capacity will also allow the proponent to honour existing long term contracts which extend beyond the current estimated life of the remaining approved disposal capacity.

Construction timing and cost

Construction is expected to begin following the approval of the EA. Construction of the expansion would cost approximately $21.7 million to $26.6 million over the 10 year period.

Figure 1: Eastern Ontario Waste Handling Facility study areas

An aerial view image of the study area. The on-site study area (i.e. the existing and proposed landfill expansion) is shown with a darker green line and the off-site study area (i.e. buffer areas) is shown with a lighter green line.

View a larger version of this map (JPEG)

Figure 2: The preferred alternative

A visual representation of where expansion of the landfill will take place in relation to the existing facility. The existing landfill, buildings and leachate ponds are on the southeast side of the property, adjacent to Laflèche Road. The proposed expansion extends northeast from the existing landfill area.

The image shows the locations of the property boundaries, buffer area limits, Fraser drains, ditches, existing stormwater perimeter ditches and stormwater wet ponds.

View a larger version of this map (JPEG)

3. Results of the ministry review

The review provides the analysis of the EA. The review is not intended to summarize the EA, nor present the information found in the EA. For information on the decision making process, refer to the EA itself. The EA and supporting documentation outlines the EA planning process and demonstrates how the proponent has selected the preferred undertaking and made the final decision.

3.1 Conformance with ToR and EAA

3.1.1 Ministry analysis

The ministry coordinated an analysis of the EA with the GRT that, in part, looked at whether the requirements of the ToR have been met. The ministry has concluded the EA followed the framework outlined in the ToR, and has addressed the commitments made in the ToR. In addition, the EA has satisfied the requirements of the EAA.

Appendix A summarizes this analysis and identifies how the ToR requirements have been addressed in the EA.

3.1.2 Consultation

One of the key requirements of the EAA is pre-submission consultation completed during the preparation of the EA. This consultation is the responsibility of the proponent and must be taken prior to the submission of the EA to the Minister and must be in accordance with the consultation plan outlined in the ToR.

Once the EA is submitted to the ministry, additional ministry driven consultation occurs during the EA comment period. The GRT, the public and affected Indigenous communities are provided with the opportunity to review the EA and to submit comments to the ministry on whether the requirements of the ToR had been met, on the EA itself and on the proposed undertaking. All comments received by the ministry during the EA comment period were forwarded to the proponent for a response. Summaries of the all comments received along with the proponent’s responses are included in Tables 1-2. Copies of the GRT submissions are also available in Appendix B.

Government Review Team

Consultation with the GRT was conducted throughout the EA process. This included pre-submission discussions; technical meetings with ministry staff, and providing an opportunity to review the draft EA. Most of the comments provided on the draft EA were incorporated into the final EA.

Members of the GRT were provided copies of the final EA for their review during the seven-week EA submission comment period. Comments on the final EA were only received from South Nation Conservation. No other GRT comments were received on the final EA.

South Nation Conservation commented on potential impacts to the groundwater as a result of leachate. See section 3.3 for key issues and the responses to these concerns.

This comment was forwarded to the proponent for a response. A summary of the comments and the proponent’s responses can be found in Table 1 of this review.

Public consultation

The proponent used a variety of consultation methods to consult with the public including: public notices, public open houses, site visits with local stakeholders, a dedicated telephone number and staff contact, and online engagements through the project website.

The notice of commencement of the final EA was published on June 7, 2017 in the Cornwall Standard-Freeholder and Le Reflet-The News newspapers in both English and French. A contact database was maintained throughout the EA process.

The proponent made the draft EA and its supporting documents available on the project website to members of the public for comment. A summary of participant feedback, included in Appendix B of the EA, outlines what concerns were voiced and the proponent’s responses.

The notice of submission of the final EA was published on June 1, 2018. One interested stakeholder submitted comments on the EA.

Indigenous community consultation

In addition to the EAA requirement that interested persons be consulted, proponents are required to consult with Indigenous communities who have credibly asserted or established Aboriginal or treaty rights that may potentially be negatively impacted by the proposed undertaking.

The proponent developed a list of potentially impacted Indigenous communities and provided them with information on the EA throughout the process. The initial list of Indigenous communities that were contacted included:

  • Mohawk Council of Akwesasne
  • Algonquins of Ontario Consultation Office
  • Huron Wendat Nation Council
  • Métis Nation of Ontario Council
  • Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte–Tyendinaga Mohawk Council
  • Métis Nation of Ontario Ottawa Region Métis Council

Formal study notices were circulated to Indigenous communities. Correspondence invited the communities to participate during the ToR phase of the study and each round of EA consultation. Also an opportunity to meet on a one-on-one basis was provided to each community.

During preparation of the EA, the above communities were kept informed of the progress of the EA, and received a copy of the draft EA to review and provide comments on. Only one community (Huron Wendat Nation) submitted comments following the Notice of Commencement regarding the archaeological assessments completed on the project study area. No comments were received by any Indigenous communities on the final EA.

3.1.3 Conclusion

The EAA requires that the proponent consult with all interested persons during the preparation of the EA and report on the results of that consultation. The EA adequately describes the consultation that was undertaken and the outcomes of the various consultation activities/events. The EA documents how input received throughout the consultation program influenced the study, and ultimately the preferred alternative. The proponent has undertaken an extensive consultation program as part of the ToR and EA.

The ministry is satisfied that the level of consultation undertaken with the public, Indigenous communities and GRT was appropriate for this proposed undertaking.

Overall, the ministry believes that the proponent provided sufficient opportunities for the public, interested stakeholders, government agencies and Indigenous communities to be consulted during the preparation of the EA. The proponent has committed to continue to engage Indigenous communities, interested stakeholder groups and agencies during detail design, construction and operation of the proposed undertaking.

The ministry is satisfied that the consultation carried out meets the requirements of the EAA and is consistent with the approved ToR.

3.2 Environmental assessment process

Alternatives and evaluation process

The EAA provides a planning process that requires a proponent to identify a problem or opportunity, consider alternative ways of addressing the problem or opportunity, evaluate the potential effects of those alternatives against select environmental criteria (noise, air quality including greenhouse gas emissions, cultural heritage, water quality, etc.) and then select a preferred alternative.

Through the review of the final EA, staff of the ministry determined whether or not the proponent followed the EA process and incorporated commitments in the approved ToR into the final EA that was submitted for review and a decision.

The EA included an analysis of two alternative methods (locations and designs) for implementing the landfill expansion as outlined in the ToR. These alternative methods consist of different configurations for the expansion of the remaining landfill footprint, which were both expansions to the north of the existing facilitiy, as well as different locations for components such as compost storage and equipment facilities.

The evaluation approach for the alternative methods can be found in Section 5 of the EA report. A comparative evaluation of the alternative methods can be found in Section 7 of the EA. A net effects assessment was completed for both alternatives and each alternative was compared to each other to determine which would be preferred based on the least impact to the surrounding environment.

Through the analysis of the ToR, it was determined that the “do nothing” alternative would not address the key problem, which was to provide additional landfill capacity for the surrounding municipalities. As such, it was not assessed as a baseline against the other two alternative methods. The net effects assessment determined that Alternative Method 1, which was to expand the landfill footprint uniformly north of the existing landfill footprint, was the preferred alternative to the undertaking as it has less potential to impact terrestrial ecosystems and planned future land uses.

The ministry found that the proponent followed a logical and transparent decision making process that was outlined in the EA. The proponent assessed a reasonable range of alternatives and outlined the advantages and disadvantages of each alternative method. The ministry was satisfied with the level of detail provided to assess impacts and select the preferred alternative. The mitigation measures are commitments that the proponent made to reduce potential negative effects and enhance potential positive effects of the undertaking.

Refer to Appendix A of this review for the ministry’s analysis of how the EA met the requirements of the EAA and the approved ToR.

Considerations and commitments

Section 10 of the EA outlines conclusions and next steps, and includes commitments to future work. Commitments and environmental/compliance monitoring for the proposed undertaking can be found in Table 10-1 of the EA. Environmental monitoring includes groundwater monitoring plans, odour management plans and completing a compliance monitoring program after approval of the EA.

3.2.1 Conclusion

Overall, the ministry in consultation with the GRT, is satisfied with the proponent’s decision making process, including demonstrating the rationale for the preferred alternative. The EA contains an explanation of the problem that prompted the EA and the opportunities that can be realized as part the proposed undertaking. A reasonable range of alternative designs were considered for the expansion of the landfill and it is evident that public and agency input was considered in creation, evaluation and selection of these alternatives.

The EA provides a description of the potentially affected environment in the study area and identifies the potential effects of the alternatives. Net effects are identified and commitments to monitoring and contingency made to ensure any potential negative effects from the undertaking are minimized.

The proponent has considered the effects of climate change and cumulative effects on the undertaking, and considered the effects the project has on climate change and source water protection. As there are no planned or future projects proposed in the areas surrounding the existing landfill, there are no anticipated cumulative effects of the implementation of this project on any nearby undertakings.

The EA adequately described the advantages and disadvantages of the proposed undertaking to the environment based on potential environmental effects. Requirements of the EAA for consultation with the public, GRT and Indigenous communities have been met. The ministry is satisfied that the EA has been completed in accordance with the approved ToR and meets the requirements of the EAA.

3.3 Comments on the undertaking

Comments on the proposed undertaking were submitted to the ministry by the GRT and interested persons during the 7-week EA submission public, government agency and Indigenous community comment period. No comments were received from Indigenous communities during this comment period.

Public comments

One interested person submitted comments on the EA. The concerns were related to landfill gas and the impacts to the environment, as well as some concern over potential impacts to the local deer and moose habitats in the area.

The proponent addressed the concerns relating to landfill gas emissions by directing the stakeholder to the sections of the EA that speak to landfill gas collection system located within the landfill site. The proponent indicated that the current system, which will be expanded into the new landfill footprint, is functioning properly and impacts to the environment as a result greenhouse gas emissions are not anticipated.

With regards to impacts to wildlife habitat, the proponent has indicated that the EA has considered both on site and off site effects. The EA report identified that there will be no direct or indirect impacts on deer or moose movement corridors or habitat linkages. MNRF did not identify any concerns in this regard.

Responses to these concerns can be found in Table 2 in Appendix B.

Government Review Team comments

South Nation Conservation

South Nation Conservation submitted comments on the EA during the comment period. The comments were focused on the assessment of hydrological impacts of the project and the potential impacts of leachate into the groundwater.

The proponent assessed potential impacts to ground and surface water in the EA and supporting supplemental documentation. The assessment identifies the monitoring that is undertaken to ensure that leachate concentrations remain low and impacts to groundwater are not anticipated as a result of the landfill expansion. Furthermore, the proponent confirms that all groundwater monitoring is documented in annual groundwater monitoring reports that are submitted to MECP for review and comment. The MECP did not identify any concerns with groundwater impacts as a result of leachate when reviewing the EA. The proponent has committed to providing the stormwater management and groundwater management reports to the Conservation authority. A condition of approval is recommended as part of the Minister’s decision to require the proponent to circulate all future stormwater and groundwater management reports to the Conservation authority following implementation of the project.

3.3.1 Conclusion

Ministry staff are satisfied that the proposed expansion would be designed and operated to comply with the ministry’s standards and that the environmental effects of the proposed undertaking can be managed through the commitments made in the EA, through proposed conditions of approval or through additional work that must be carried out by the proponent in support of future approval applications, if the undertaking as described in the EA is approved.

3.3.2 Additional environmental considerations

This section of the review assesses how changes to the environment were considered in the EA with respect to:

  • air quality
  • severe weather
Air quality

The proponent considered measures to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions in the evaluation of waste disposal alternatives. Measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the proposed landfill expansion include the recovery or reduction of biodegradable waste (organics diversion) and landfill gas capture.

Diverting organic materials such as food and yard waste from landfills by methods such as composting or anaerobic digestion reduces the production and emissions of methane, a potent greenhouse gas, to the atmosphere. The EA identifies that the proponent is already implementing a diversion plan for organics and will expand these facilities into the future.

In addition, the expansion of the facility will include an expansion of the existing landfill gas management system, which removes gas generated from the landfill waste and used as fuel for reciprocating engines producing electrical power generation within the facility.

Finally, the leachate collection system that is currently implemented and will be expanded into the new landfill footprint will reduce infiltration of leachate into the groundwater, which will allow for the landfill gas collection system to function more efficiently.

Severe weather

The ministry’s Codes of Practice for Preparing and Reviewing Environmental Assessments in Ontario (2014) states that the EA should attempt to examine the interrelationships between components of the environment and then undertaking, for example, how the project could interrelate with changing climate over time.

The proponent has acknowledged the on-going changes to global climate as a result of increased emissions and concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. To address these changes in climate, the proponent has evaluated the impact of increased intensity of storm events, potential impacts to leachate generation due to higher temperatures and assessing landfill gas generation rates to mitigate atmospheric emissions. The EA report identified the potential impacts of extreme weather on many project components such as stormwater management and leachate management strategy (natural attenuation). The ministry is satisfied that the proponent has adequately assessed whether the expanded landfill and associated site components will have the feasibility to withstand impacts from weather events of increased frequency and intensity as a result of climate change.

3.3.3 Source water protection considerations

The project is not located within or adjacent to any nearby source protection zone areas that delineate vulnerable areas for the protection of municipal drinking water systems such as: Wellhead Protection Areas, Intake Protection Zones, Highly Vulnerable Aquifers, or Significant Groundwater Recharge Areas, according to provincial standards set out under the Clean Water Act. Therefore, no impacts are anticipated on municipal drinking water systems.

4. Summary of the ministry review

The review has explained the ministry’s analysis for the landfill expansion.

This review concludes:

  • The EA complies with the requirements of the approved ToR and has been prepared in accordance with the EAA. The EA has provided sufficient information to enable a decision to be made about the application to proceed with the undertaking.
  • The EA has assessed and evaluated alternative methods to arrive at the preferred undertaking, assessed the potential environmental effects of the alternative methods and the proposed undertaking, and provides a description of mitigation and monitoring measures to address the potential negative environmental effects of the proposed undertaking or a commitment has been made to address them through additional work that would be completed as part of future approval requirements.
  • If the proposed undertaking is approved under the EAA, there are several standard conditions imposed such as the requirement to conduct and report on the results of compliance monitoring and to develop a protocol for responding to complaints received during all the phases of the undertaking.

5. What happens now

The review will be made available for a five-week comment period. During this time, all interested parties, including the public, the GRT and Indigenous communities can submit comments to the ministry about the proposed undertaking, the EA and/or the ministry review. At this time, anyone can make a written request that the Minister refer either all or part of the EA to the Environmental Review Tribunal for a hearing if there are significant outstanding environmental concerns that have not been considered.

At the end of the review comment period, ministry staff will make a recommendation to the Minister concerning whether the EA has been prepared in accordance with the ToR and the requirements of the EAA and whether the proposed undertaking should be approved. When making a decision, the Minister will consider the purpose of the EAA, the ToR, the EA, the review, the comments submitted during the EA and the review comment periods and any other matters the Minister may consider relevant.

The Minister will make one of the following decisions:

  • give approval to proceed with the undertaking
  • give approval to proceed with the undertaking subject to conditions
  • refuse to give approval to proceed with the undertaking

Prior to making that decision, the Minister may also refer either part of or the entire EA to mediation or refer either part of or the entire EA to the Environmental Review Tribunal for a decision.

The ministry will recommend standard conditions on the final EA decision, including a condition that will require the proponent to provide stormwater and groundwater monitoring reports to the South Nation Conservation for review and comment.

If the Minister approves, approves with conditions or refuses to give approval to the undertaking, the Lieutenant Governor in Council must concur with the decision.

5.1 Additional approvals required

If EAA approval is granted, GFL Environmental Inc. will still require other legislative approvals to design, construct and operate this undertaking. Section 11 of the EA outlines additional approvals that may be required. These approvals may include:

  • an amendment to the existing Environmental Compliance Approval number A420018 for the landfill site is required prior to construction and operation of the landfill expansion
  • an amendment to the industrial sewage works Environmental Compliance Approval number 3962-AQPJDP issued under the Ontario Water Resources Act is required prior to construction
  • an amendment to the Environmental Compliance Approval (Air) number 1387-7QUGFA will be required for the expansion of the landfill gas collection system and for the addition of a second enclosed flare

These approvals cannot be issued until approval under the EAA is granted.

The undertaking is not subject to Canadian Environmental Assessment Act requirements.

5.2 Modifying or amending the proposed undertaking

There are no amending procedures documented in the EA. Any proposed change to the undertaking would have to be considered in the context of the EAA and Ontario Regulation 101/07 (Waste Management Projects) and any EAA requirements met before any change to the undertaking can be implemented.

6. Public record locations

The public record for this environmental assessment can be reviewed during normal business hours at the following ministry office:

Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks
Environmental Assessment and Permissions Branch
135 St. Clair Avenue West, 1st Floor
Toronto, Ontario

The review and notice of completion are also available at the following locations:

Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks

Kingston Regional Office
Unit 3, 1259 Gardiners Road
Kingston, Ontario
K7P 3J6

Monday to Friday
8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Ottawa District Office
2430 Don Reid Drive
Ottawa, Ontario
K1H 1E1

Monday to Friday
8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Cornwall Area Office
113 Amelia Street
Cornwall, Ontario
K6H 3P1

Monday to Friday
8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Copies are also available for viewing at the Township of North Stormont Municipal Office and GFL Environmental Inc.'s office:

Township of North Stormont
Municipal Office
15 Union Street
Berwick, Ontario
K0C 1G0

Monday to Friday
8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

GFL Environmental Inc.
EOWHF Administrative Office
17125 Lafleche Road
Moose Creek, Ontario
K0C 1W0

7. Making a submission

A five-week public review period ending on November 9, 2018 will follow publication of this review. During this time, any interested parties can make submissions about the proposed undertaking, the environmental assessment or this review. Should you wish to make a submission, please send it to:

Director
Environmental Assessment and Permissions Branch
Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks
135 St. Clair Avenue West, 1st Floor
Toronto, Ontario
M4V 1P5
Fax: 416-314-8452

Re: Eastern Ontario Waste Handling Facility environmental assessment

Attention: Mr. Adam Sanzo, Project Officer

All personal information included in a submission—such as name, address, telephone number and property location of requester—is collected, maintained and disclosed by the ministry for the purpose of transparency and consultation. The information is collected under the authority of the Environmental Assessment Act or is collected and maintained for the purpose of creating a record that is available to the general public as described in section 37 of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. Personal information that is submitted will become part of a public record that is available to the general public unless a request is made that personal information remain confidential. For more information, the ministry’s Freedom of Information and Privacy Coordinator can be contacted at 416-327-1434

Appendix A: Environmental Assessment Act and terms of reference requirements of the environmental assessment

EA decision making process EAA and ToR requirements Description and characteristics of the requirements
Problem/opportunities Identify an existing problem or opportunity

Purpose of the undertaking: section 6(2)(b), section 6.1(3) and section 6.1(2)(a)
The EA should contain a brief explanation of the problem or opportunity that prompted the proposed activity. If a specific undertaking has been identified provide a brief description.

Analysis of the EA

The purpose of the proposed undertaking is to provide additional landfill disposal capacity at the existing landfill, which will enable GFL Environmental Inc. to continue to provide disposal services for residual non-hazardous municipal, industrial, commercial and institutional wastes to their customers once it reaches its currently approved disposal capacity. Based upon the historical and forecasted filling rate at the landfill, GFL estimates that the landfill will reach its approved capacity in 2019.

GFL understands there is an ongoing need to continue to develop the existing landfill to its originally planned capacity for the following reasons:

  • the company can continue to provide its customer base with an integrated set of services including collection, transfer, processing and disposal in a reliable and cost effective manner
  • long term contractual obligations to municipalities across Ontario can be honoured and fulfilled
  • the Province’s waste diversion programs and objectives are and will continue to be supported
  • environmental impacts of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions will be minimized through:
    • reducing the number of waste related trucks hauling material long distances
    • diversion of organic material and composting
    • closure of small municipal landfill sites without gas collection systems
    • the capture of landfill (methane) gas and generation of green energy at the site

The landfill is permitted to receive up to 755,000 tonnes of waste per year for disposal. Landfill development at the site is now progressing into Stage 3A, the last of the planned stages. Based on current disposal volumes, the landfill is estimated to reach its current approved capacity in 2019.

The approval and expansion of the landfill Stages 3B and 4 will provide an additional 4.2 million m3 of disposal capacity and extend the operating life of the landfill by approximately 5 to 10 years, depending on the annual rate of filling. The completion of Phase 2 (Stages 3B and 4) supports the build-out of the landfill site as originally planned and described in the previous EA.

EA decision making process EAA and ToR requirements Description and characteristics of the requirements
Alternatives Description and statement of the rationale for the alternative methods.

Alternative methods, section 6(2)(b), section 6.1(2)(b)(ii), section 6.1(3)
"Alternative methods" include a description of different ways of implementing the preferred "alternative to". A reasonable range of "alternative methods" should be identified and outlined.

Analysis of the EA

Chapter 5: Design Alternatives of the EA explains how the alternative methods were formulated, and describes the methodology followed to identify the preferred alternative method for implementing the undertaking.

Two "alternative methods" of developing additional landfill disposal capacity at the site were identified and are described below as per the ToR. These alternative methods were developed to the level of preliminary conceptual designs and were presented at two open houses as part of the consultation and engagement process during the ToR.

Alternative Method 1

Alternative Method 1 consists of developing the areas of Stage 3B in line with the existing Stage 3A, and Stage 4 parallel to Stages 3A and 3B. This alternative method will provide approximately 4.2 million m3 of landfill capacity. This alternative method extends west and northward closer to the wastewater treatment plant, onto land currently used for storing finished compost. The design of these stages will be consistent with the currently-approved design (under the 1998 EA) including base excavation, final contours, liner and leachate collection system, LFG collection and daily operations. The existing buffer area from the southern, eastern and western boundary of the landfill will remain.

Alternative Method 2

Alternative Method 2 consists of developing the areas of Stage 3B in line with the existing Stage 3A and Stage 4 parallel to Stages 3A and 3B with the development of an L-shape configuration into the northeast corner of the property. This alternative method will provide approximately 4.2 million m3 of landfill capacity. This alternative method will allow the continued use of land near the wastewater treatment plant for convenient, accessible storage of finished compost product and bulking material in close proximity to the composting facility. The design of these stages will be consistent with the currently-approved design including base excavation, final contours, liner and leachate collection system, LFG collection and daily operations. The existing buffer area from the southern, eastern and western boundary of the landfill will remain while portions of the northern buffer area will be used for stormwater management.

Conceptual designs for these two alternative methods were developed in greater detail during the EA including refinements to the concepts as described in the ToR. The conceptual designs, assessed in the EA, and associated refinements are outlined in the following sections.

The conceptual designs of the landfill expansion alternative methods were developed in greater detail as part of the EA to confirm feasibility, constructability and approvability under the EPA. These more detailed conceptual designs were used to support the net effects assessment and comparative evaluation.

Through the review of the EA, it was determined that the "do nothing" alternative would not address the key problem, which was to provide additional landfill capacity for the surrounding municipalities. As such, it was not assessed as a baseline against the other two alternative methods.

The ministry is satisfied that an adequate description of the different ways of implementing the alternative solution was provided, and a reasonable range of alternative methods were evaluated using a broad range of environmental criteria and measures.

EA decision making process EAA and ToR requirements Description and characteristics of the requirements
Evaluation Description of the environment.

Section 6(2)(b), section 6.1(3), section 6.1(2)(c)(i)
Proponents must consider the broad definition of the environment including the natural, biophysical, social, economic, built and cultural conditions. The EA must provide a description of the existing environmental conditions in the study area. The EA must identify those elements of the environment that may be reasonably expected to be affected, either directly or indirectly, by the proposed undertaking and/or the alternatives.

Analysis of the EA

A preliminary description of the existing environmental conditions at the site was provided in the approved ToR. The ToR contained the commitment that the existing environment will be characterized in the EA, and will address the five aspects of the environment as defined in the OEAA:

  • natural environment
  • built environment
  • cultural environment
  • social environment
  • economic environment

The existing landfill is located on the western half of Lot 16 and Lots 17 and 18, Concession 10, Township of North Stormont, United Counties of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry, near the intersection of Highway 417 and Highway 138. The municipal street address for the EOWHF is 17125 Lafleche Road, Moose Creek, Ontario.

The Natural Environment, as defined for the EA, includes the Atmospheric Environment, Geology and Hydrogeology, the Surface Water Environment, and the Ecological Environment.

Chapter 4 of the EA outlines the potentially affected environment. The baseline conditions document the existing natural, cultural, social, and economic environments in the study area.

The ministry is satisfied that a broad definition of the environment was considered and a description of existing environmental conditions in the study area provided.

EA decision making process EAA and ToR requirements Description and characteristics of the requirements
Evaluation Description of potential environmental effects

Section 6(2)(b), section 6.1(3), section 6.1(2)(c)(ii)
Both positive and negative environmental effects should be discussed. The EA must identify methods and studies used to analyze the potential environmental effects. The methods used are contingent on the type of project. Impact assessment methods and criteria used during the evaluation should be identified. The methods chosen must be clear, traceable and replicable so that interested parties can understand the analysis and logic used throughout the EA.

Analysis of the EA

The EA clearly identified the potential effects of the project activities for the preferred undertaking on the environment.

Chapter 8: This section of the EA Study Report includes a summary of the net effects assessment for the alternatives, an assessment of cumulative effects, climate change considerations, and advantages and disadvantages of each alternative.

A net effects assessment summary was prepared for the following disciplines:

  • cultural heritage resources/archaeology
  • natural environment
  • groundwater quality
  • stormwater management
  • air quality
  • noise
  • economics effects on local community
  • effects on current/planned land uses

The EA assesses both positive and potential negative effects of the alternatives. The evaluation method included identifying proposed monitoring and mitigation measures to minimize or avoid any potential negative environmental effects of the preferred undertaking being considered as part of the EA process. The EA Report identifies the net effects of the undertaking during both construction and operation.

The evaluation method in the EA was clear, traceable and replicable and appropriate for a landfill expansion in a rural area.

EA decision making process EAA and ToR requirements Description and characteristics of the requirements
Evaluation Description of the actions necessary to prevent, change, mitigate or remedy the environmental effects

Section 6(2)(b), section 6.1(3) and section 6.1(2)(c)(iii)
A description of future commitments, studies and a work plan may be included as part of the actions necessary to prevent change, mitigate or remedy environmental effects for each alternative for the ultimate purpose of comparing them.

Analysis of the EA

Overall, the EA provides a description of the commitments to prevent, change, mitigate or remedy potential environmental effects.

Commitments to monitoring are discussed in Chapter 10 of the EA. Table 10-1 summarizes EA commitments and compliance monitoring.

On-going environmental monitoring is proposed in the EA, and includes completing compliance monitoring plans for the project, annual groundwater monitoring reports, surface water monitoring reports, and air quality monitoring reports.

EA decision making process EAA and ToR requirements Description and characteristics of the requirements
Evaluation Description of consultation with interested stakeholders

Section 6(2)(b), section 6.1(3) and section 6.1(2)(e)
A description of stakeholder consultation that occurred during the preparation of the EA needs be documented and should include consultation methods used, frequency of consultation, dates that events occurred, target audience, descriptions of key milestones for which stakeholders are providing input, comments received.

The EA must identify any Indigenous community consultation efforts that have been made including methods for identifying potentially interested First Nations, who was consulted, when and how consultation occurred and any comments received from First Nations.

The EA should outline conflict resolution techniques used by the proponent to resolve outstanding issues with any stakeholders. There must be clear documentation as to how issues and concerns have been addressed.

Analysis of the EA

Chapter 9 of the EA provides a consultation program overview; documenting key consultation activities, and summarizing major consultation events. The detailed record of consultation can be found in Supporting Document 4.

Key consultation methods included public forums, a Stakeholder meetings, public notices, and a project website.

Chapter 9.2 describes consultation with Indigenous communities. The potentially-interested communities were identified as:

  • Mohawk Council of Akwesasne
  • Algonquins of Ontario Consultation Office
  • Huron Wendat Nation Council
  • Métis Nation of Ontario Council
  • Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte—Tyendinaga Mohawk Council
  • Métis Nation of Ontario Ottawa Region Métis Council

Letters and emails were sent to each of the communities advising of the public information centres.

Chapter 9.3.7 summarizes the release of the draft EA for voluntary review. Indigenous Communities, GRT and stakeholders were invited to review the draft EA report during the review period, between January 31, 2018 and March 5, 2016, and provide comments to the project team.

The EA demonstrates how public/agency input received throughout the EA process informed the results of the EA.

The EAA requires that the proponents consult with all interested persons during the preparation of the EA and report on the results of that consultation. The ministry is satisfied that the proponents appropriately carried out the consultation plan that was outlined in the approved ToR.

Overall, the ministry is satisfied that the proponents provided sufficient opportunities for the public, interested stakeholders and Indigenous communities to be consulted during the preparation of the EA.

EA decision making process EAA and ToR requirements Description and characteristics of the requirements
Selection process Proposed undertaking

Description and statement of the rationale for the undertaking

Section 6(2)(b), section 6.1(3) and section 6.1(2)(b)(i)
The description of the undertaking should specify what the proponent is seeking approval for under the EAA. The description should include information on the location, attributes, dimensions, emissions, etc. The evaluation process should identify which is the preferred undertaking.

Analysis of the EA

The evaluation process in Chapter 5 of the EA explains why alternatives were chosen and why the preferred undertaking was selected. A net effects assessment was undertaken for the alternatives and the preferred alternative was selected only after determining it would cause the least impacts on the surrounding environment.

Chapter 3 provides a description of the preferred undertaking.

The EA documents how the preferred undertaking addresses the problem and opportunity statement, which is to provide additional capacity at the landfill site as the current site is reaching capacity.

In the EA, Chapter 10 details commitments to future work. Standard conditions including compliance monitoring and reporting, and public record-keeping are recommended by the ministry to ensure all commitments in the EA are carried out.

EA decision making process EAA and ToR requirements Description and characteristics of the requirements
Selection process Additional approvals Outline additional approval requirements. Provide sufficient detail about the nature of the approval.

Analysis of the EA

If EA approval is granted, the proponents will still require other legislative approvals to construct and operate the undertaking. Chapter 11 of the EA outlines additional approvals that may be required, including:

  • an amendment to the existing ECA number A420018 for the landfill site
  • an amendment to the Industrial Sewage Works ECA number 3962-AQPJDP (previously 4299-9U8PV6) issued under the OWRA
  • an amendment to the ECA (Air) number 1387-7QUGFA will be required

Appendix B: Submissions received during the initial comment period

Submissions are available in hard copy at the public record locations listed in this ministry review.

Table 1: Government Review Team comment summary table

South Nation Conservation

Comment #1
Summary of comments

The report states that an Esker is located 3 kilometres to the northeast. The esker is actually located 2.6 kilometres to the northwest from the property boundaries and 1.6 kilometres from the study area.

Proponent’s response

The esker is located to the northwest of the site as noted by GFL Environmental Inc. This was a typographical error in the Geology/Hydrogeology Existing Conditions Report.

Status

MECP accepts the typographical error in the Existing Conditions Report. MECP technical staff reviewed the EA documentation and has no significant outstanding concerns with the locations of the existing eskers or other hydrological features in the study area.

Comment #2
Summary of comments

Table 8 provided a Summary of Analytical Parameter Concentrations. This table shows dramatic differences in background historical minimum/maximum in all identified stratigraphies. Based on what is provided in this report, all site perimeter monitoring wells (96 Series) are used to calculate the upper threshold limits. Based on the dramatic historical minimum/maximum differences across all parameters, it seems that any potential impacts to monitoring wells having concentrations close to minimum levels would go unreported as the upper threshold limits are high. For example, in bedrock the Sodium upper threshold limit is calculated to be more than 20 times the minimum average. This seems to assume that all of the wells are hydraulically connected and are representing the same geochemical signatures. Local knowledge of hundreds of groundwater quality assessments from hydrogeological studies indicates that significant variations of groundwater quality exists across the South Nation Watershed over very short distances. Without historical or current groundwater quality results from the site perimeter monitoring network SNC is unable to say with absolute certainty, but calculating averages and upper threshold limits from water qualities having such significantly different levels may result in leachate impacted wells going unnoticed. Based on the fact that an esker having an abundant supply of potable water is located less than 2.6 km to the north west and the St. Rose de Prescott aquifer is Identified less than 1 km North of the landfill site property, this should be a significant concern to the MECP. The process of comparing upper threshold limits seems more likely to identify leachate impacts if they were calculated on a per well basis not an average across the entire site.

It is recommended that the MECP review the current process for the identification of leachate impacts to groundwater, for this landfill, and it is further recommended that threshold limits be calculated based on individual well groundwater variations not entire site groundwater variations.

Proponent’s response

Table 8 shows the historical minimum and maximum concentrations, the background concentrations calculated as per Ontario Regulation 232/98, and the upper threshold or tolerance limits for many parameters measured in the three (3) stratigraphic units monitored with the site perimeter wells (96 series). Threshold or tolerance limits have been used for monitoring the existing landfill since its inception due to the significant variations in background water quality. However, the potential presence of leachate impacts is also assessed at each monitoring well and within each stratigraphic unit at the site based on a set of six individual indicators. This assessment process was not explicitly described in the Existing Conditions Report but is detailed in the annual monitoring reports prepared for the landfill site. This information could have been included in the EA to assist the reviewer in better understanding the overall assessment of any potential leachate impacts at the site.

The analytical results obtained at each well are first assessed using the six individual indicators to provide an initial assessment of the likelihood for any potential leachate impact at a given well location provided that there is enough historical data to properly interpret the groundwater quality. The results from the six individual indicators are combined to validate or not the presence of leachate. If the assessment using the combined indicators suggests a potential leachate impact in any well, an investigation is triggered. As such, if a concentration for a given parameter is lower than the background concentration or the upper tolerance limit, a leachate impact will not go unnoticed because the other individual indicators are also considered. Furthermore, monitors have been positioned on site (S1, S2 and S3 series) downgradient from the landfill cells and several hundred meters hydraulically upgradient from the property boundaries in all aquifer units in order to quickly identify if leachate is impacting groundwater before it reaches the property boundary or before it reaches underlying stratigraphic units. Other wells are also positioned to monitor potential impacts from other infrastructure (e.g. leachate holding ponds) on-site with a potential to impact groundwater with leachate. The results from those wells are also compared using these six indicators. The location of these wells and their water quality were presented in the Existing Conditions Report.

Compliance with the MECP Reasonable Use Guideline B-7 can be achieved by relying on the existing natural, low permeability clay deposit with a natural upward vertical hydraulic gradient occurring at the site. Since the beginning of landfilling, the site has been determined to be in conformance with Guideline B-7 (Reasonable Use) as leachate impacts have not been detected in the monitoring wells installed at the site perimeter boundaries. Also, the Geology and Hydrogeology Effects Assessment Report, prepared as part of the EA, has modeled the leachate transport through the various stratigraphic units and showed no anticipated effects at the property boundaries for either of the landfill expansion alternative methods assessed.

GFL submits an annual groundwater monitoring report for the existing landfill to the MECP for review and comments. During the review of the draft EA, the MECP noted that the hydrogeology in and around the landfill has been extensively studied and monitored since the site was approved in 1998 and that impacts of the current site are generally well known and predictable. In addition, it was indicated that the site currently conforms to the ministry’s Reasonable Use Guideline B-7 based on the latest 2016 Annual Monitoring Report reviewed.

Status

MECP is satisfied that GFL Environmental Inc. has adequately assessed the potential impacts of leachate to the existing hydrogeological features in the surrounding environment.

MECP technical staff have reviewed the EA documentation and have no outstanding concerns with regards to hydrogeological impacts of the project on the study area.

Comment #3
Summary of comments

Two new wet ponds are proposed for the northwest and northeast corners of the site. The reports state there are two alternative methods for the ponds; however, it is indicated that each method will provide post to pre development quantity control up to the 100-year event, and TSS removal of 80%. Multiple sample points and a monitoring program are also proposed.

It is further stated that a detailed design will be provided at a later date demonstrating how the above will be achieved. South Nation Conservation requests the opportunity to review and comment on the detailed design of the storm water management facilities.

Proponent’s response

To clarify, the EA does not identify two alternative methods for the proposed new stormwater ponds. The EA identifies and assesses two alternative methods for the development of the landfill expansion, each of which has a slightly different configuration of the required ponds. As outlined in the Surface Water Quality and Surface Water Quantity Effects Assessment reports, along with the EA Study Report, the existing monitoring program for the stormwater management system will be maintained.

GFL will provide South Nation Conservation with a copy of the updated stormwater management plan for the project, including design drawings and specifications, that will be prepared as part of the Environmental Compliance Approval amendment application for the new ponds and related infrastructure.

Status

MECP is satisfied that GFL Environmental Inc. has adequately assessed alternative methods in the EA, including the location of components such as stormwater ponds on the project site. A condition of approval is proposed which will require the proponent to provide the groundwater and stormwater management reports to the conservation authority.

Table 2: Public comment summary table

Comment #1

Summary of comments

Section 4.3.1.7 of the EA Study Report (page 32) states that the landfill gas (LFG) collection system includes 144 vertical extraction wells. The total adds up to 184 wells.

Proponent’s response

The 40 gas wells in Stage 3A are being planned to be drilled in Fall 2018 and will be online in Winter 2018. The total number of wells that are installed at the existing landfill is 144 and the new total after the gas wells have been installed in Stage 3A will be 184.

Status

MECP is satisfied that GFL Environmental Inc. has adequately identified the amount of gas wells for the facility.

Comment #2

Summary of comments

The flaring of the LFG leads to GHG emissions and the venting of methane if the flares are not working leads to some of the odour complaints. The amount of LFG will increase over time as the amount of methane produced from the waste increases. One possibility is to allow more electricity generation from methane.

A second option for the methane is to produce biomethane fuel to power vehicles.

Proponent’s response

As described in Section 5.3.5.3 of the EA Study Report, LFG generation rates will increase gradually until a maximum is reached at site capacity and the older cells no longer produce methane gas. LFG generation will gradually decrease after landfill closure. The existing landfill gas to energy facility has four engines and is operating at capacity. While the facility has the capability to be expanded to a total of eight engines, GFL has been unable to secure a contract with Ontario Power Generation for the purchase of additional electricity generated by the facility. For the purpose of the EA, it was assumed that a second enclosed flare will be installed as part of the project to manage additional gas volumes and serve as a contingency in the event of the engines not operating. The EA also outlines how the progressive placement of the final, low permeability cover will help control fugitive LFG releases.

GFL regularly reviews its business practices including the consideration of alternatives for the use of collected LFG.

Status

MECP is satisfied that GFL Environmental Inc. has adequately identified the amount of gas wells for the facility.

Comment #3

Summary of comments

On pages 69 and 70 of the report, it discusses the deer wintering yard. The deer have moved south to Concession VIII. Nowhere in the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry’s comments or in the report is the presence of moose in the Moose Creek Bog discussed.

Proponent’s response

Potential effects of the alternatives on wildlife habitat, both on-site and off-site, were considered in Section 6 of the EA Study Report. It was identified that there are no direct or indirect effects predicted on off-site habitat, movement corridors or habitat linkages.

Status

MECP is satisfied that GFL Environmental Inc. has adequately assessed the potential impacts of the project to wildlife in the surrounding natural environment. MNRF (whose mandate was to review wildlife impacts during the preparation of the EA) had no concerns with the project.

Comment #4

Summary of comments

For completeness of the socio-economic report, the total amount of the community fund paid to the Township of North Stormont should be provided.

Proponent’s response

The details regarding the annual financial contributions made by GFL to the Township as part of the Host Community Agreement are included in Table 11 of the Socio-Economic Existing Conditions Report (SD #1-8).

Status

Financial contributions that are made from the proponent to the host municipality are not considered in the EA and thus is out of scope for this project. The ministry is satisfied with the proponent’s response.

Updated: July 05, 2021
Published: October 04, 2018